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5 places to find peace and quiet in Austin

Austin may be a loud city, but there are many places Austinites can go to clear their minds and escape the noise of the big city.

A stone wall inside Zilker Botanical Garden with a rock formation in the shape of the state of Texas.

Somehow, Zilker Botanical Garden really feels like home.

Photo via @annakathleen16

Austin is a bustling city, but with all of the excitement, the Bat City can get pretty noisy. Based on research conducted by Earth.FM, the Capital City ranked the No. 49 loudest city in the US — but that doesn’t mean you can’t find some peace and quiet.

The study also found places where locals can escape noise pollution by identifying the top quiet places in big cities. To do this, researchers assessed 3,000+ parks and nature spaces across 245 cities with populations over 250,000 and assigned them “Quiet Scores.” The methodology considered:

  • Reviews of the attractions that include words like “quiet,” “peaceful,” or “tranquil”
  • The average visitor rating at each location
  • The attraction’s popularity and how that impacts its peacefulness
A pond surrounded by rock walls at Westcave Preserve.

There’s no shortage of natural beauty at Westcave Preserve.

Photo via @andrewfisher7

So, where can you go in Austin to find tranquility? Here are the five best spots to get some peace and quiet, ranked in order of their Quiet Scores.

1. Mayfield Park — This 23-acre park is filled with history, gardens, ponds, and nature trails. A trip here is peaceful as a peacock, because you might even encounter one of the feathered beauties.
2. Zilker Botanical Garden — Clear your mind by walking through this 28-acre garden with themed sections, live oak trees, a Japanese garden, and ponds filled with koi fish.
3. Lady Bird Lake — Take a calming walk at a trail along this famous body of water, or get some exercise by paddle boarding on the water.
4. Westcave Outdoor Discovery Center — There are many ways to enjoy time at this preserve; there are even guided hikes to make the most of the 76-acre space.
5. Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center — This botanical garden is the perfect place to stop and smell the roses, plus hundreds of other plant species.